> The Beesley Buzz: Science at home - Litmus paper from red cabbage

Science at home - Litmus paper from red cabbage

I find it is often tricky getting the balance right with homeschool to know how much 'practical' work to do versus 'academic' work. I know it is great for kids to get really hands-on with their learning because they absorb so much more and it engages their interest so much too.

But I have to confess that it is all too easy to get the workbooks out in place of setting up a practical activity. During half-term week whilst most school-kids were having a break from school, mine were busy in the kitchen trying out some home-made science experiments.

Well the weather was rubbish that week, so by getting a bit of work done then, it has freed us up to enjoy the sunny weather we had last week instead.

A while ago a homeschooling friend of ours had successfully made some litmus paper using red cabbage, so we decided to give it a try. Whilst trying to find instructions online of how to do it, I stumbled across a fantastic blog called The Kitchen Pantry Scientist. I found instructions on how to make the litmus paper and off we went.

We boiled some red cabbage and strained it and kept the water.

Next we dunked in cut up strips of kitchen towel and then laid them out to dry.

Once dry, we got testing!

We tried out orange juice, lemon juice, milk, vinegar, toothpaste, soap, and bicarb.

The more reddish/pink it turned the more acidic and the more bluey/green it turned the more alkaline it was.
The boys really enjoyed doing this and I had fun too!


  1. He he, wonder where you got that idea from?! It's good fun though, you can also use the liquid for testing too, just drop some bicarb into a glass of the cabbage liquid and watch what happens.
    R x

    1. yes we were totally inspired by when you did the litmus paper and it has been on our 'to-do' list ever since. We did the bicarb too - the boys loved that! xxx

  2. That looks like fun I'll have a go with Seth I think he'll find that really interesting. Thanks for sending it our way xxx

    1. that was a really simple but fun one to do! xxx


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